Commentary

Influencer Content Outperforms Brand Created

According to the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) report, The Value of Influencer Content 2017 from Linqia, influencer marketing and content marketing are projected to be the fastest growing brand activation channels through 2020. As influencer marketing enters the mainstream, marketers are exploring synergies, and turning to influencers as a new, cost-effective source for content creation at scale. 

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According to the survey, 86% of marketers are using influencer marketing as part of their content marketing strategies, 88.5% of whom find the influencer content to be a valuable part of their marketing plan. When asked why they chose to work with influencers for content creation, 73% of respondents said it is because of relevance to their target audience; 72% use the tactic for the influencers’ authenticity and trusted voice; and 60% use influencer marketing to spark audience engagement. 

Reasons To Choose To Work With Influencers For Content Creation

  • Organic Reach …55%
  • Authenticity/Trusted Voice …72
  • Relevance to my Audience …73
  • Cross-Channel Following …22
  • Identify Market Insights …8
  • Quality of Content …44
  • Spark Word of Mouth …45
  • Drive Engagement …60
  • Generate Reviews …17
  • Drive Conversions …32
  • Drive Product Sales …33
  • Avoid Ad Blockers ...5

Source: Linqia, March 2017

According to the report, 15 to 20% of marketing spend can be released through better marketing return on investment (MROI) efforts, striking a more efficient balance between working spend and non-working spend.

“Working spend" is a term used to describe investments that put content in front of a consumer, in the form of consumer media, advertising, PR, shopper marketing, and event marketing. "Non-working spend" is any cost attributed to creating, planning, or managing the working marketing programs, including content creation.

Traditionally, brands pay professional content creators, which can be expensive and time consuming as marketers have to negotiate terms and compensation with each individual creator. As a result, brands are turning to influencer marketing for content creation. According to the survey, 50% of marketers pay influencers a flat rate to produce each piece of content, in the same way that they would engage a professional content producer. On average, this investment typically costs 2.6X less than working with a professional for a similar output, and enables the marketer to categorize the production as a “working spend” because the influencers are sharing the content with their audiences.

Working with influencers provides marketers with a cost-efficient alternative to creating content at scale, says the report. Linqia’s survey found that by the time a project is complete, 49% of marketers pay to professionally produce usage-based content and spend:

$1,000–$5,000 per individual blog post, how-to article, or recipe; 2.9X more than what they spend working with flat-rate influencers

26% spend between $1,000–$5,000 per professionally produced photo, 2.2X more than if they work with influencers using a flat-rate

45% of marketers spend over $5,000 per video, 2.7X more than they would if working directly with an influencer using flat-rate pricing

Influencer content is not only more cost-efficient than professionally produced content, but it is also more effective at driving results, says the report. 57% of survey respondents indicated that influencer content either somewhat or greatly outperforms brand created content.

Influencer-Generated Content Performance Compared To Professionally Produced Content (% of Respondents)

Influencer generated

     Greatly outperforms professional content

14%

     Somewhat outperforms professional content

43%

     Performs the same as professional content

24%

Professional content

     Somewhat outperforms influencer content

15%

     Content greatly outperforms influencer content

4%

Source: Linqia, March 2017

The report concludes by noting that “Influencer marketing will remain a valuable part of the overall media mix as marketers realize that the cost efficiency and proven performance of influencer content enables them to decrease their spend on non-working media and increase their investment in working media that’s proven to drive results.” 

For additional information from Linqia, please visit here.

 

3 comments about "Influencer Content Outperforms Brand Created".
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  1. Peter Rosenwald from Consult Partners, April 10, 2017 at 10:56 a.m.

    Extremely interesting piece although it raises some difficult questions.

    "“Working spend" is a term used to describe investments that put content in front of a consumer, in the form of consumer media, advertising, PR, shopper marketing, and event marketing. "Non-working spend" is any cost attributed to creating, planning, or managing the working marketing programs, including content creation."

    As a marketer particularly interested and focused on accountability, I have a bit of difficulty with your 'non-working spend' definition. To truly evaluate the results of any marketing program, I would posit that to determine the ROMI, the total revenue or margin needs to be divided by the total expenditure, 'working or non-working'. (And if it is really non-working, what's it doing there anyway?)

  2. Jack Loechner from Mediapost Communications replied, April 10, 2017 at 1:23 p.m.

    thanks, Peter, for your helpful perspective, j

  3. Craig Mcdaniel from Sweepstakes Today LLC, April 10, 2017 at 6:10 p.m.

    I find this subject of the value of "influencers" to be somewhat symantical. Pepsi's for example is going after a younger demographic group which has a higher percentage of influencers than say a company like Ford Motor Company. The difference is the price of the product which is trying to be sold. Also from a demographic standpoint, it is easier to get a follower for a $1.00 can of Pepsi than a $40,000 automobile. You can get more people in the 15 to 30 age bracket to follow Pepsi than Ford. 

    So looking at the numbers behind the influencers and why is just as important before claiming success in just getting big numbers.

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